Aircraft Mechanic

Keep planes and helicopters in good working condition.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$34,000 – $72,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Aircraft Mechanics do?

Unlike a car, an airplane can’t just pull over to the side of the road when something goes wrong with it mid-flight. Thank goodness we have the Aircraft Mechanic to ensure that the plane is in perfect working order!

As an Aircraft Mechanic, you spend your days standing under an airplane or a helicopter, or hunched over different parts of it. The tools of an Aircraft Mechanic are much bigger than those of most Mechanics, but you mainly perform the same tasks. You replace worn parts, loosen parts that don’t move, and tighten parts that do. When a Pilot reports a warning light, you run diagnostic tests to identify and fix the problem.

Much of your energy is put into preventative maintenance. Each aircraft has stringent maintenance records. Logs keep track of miles and hours flown, as well as the last time it was checked up.

Using these records, you ensure that inspections follow a schedule. You use special tools to examine engine parts for cracks, scrutinize all working parts such as the landing gear, microscopically scour the wings for any signs of fracture, and take measurements to identify wear on cables and engine components. In addition to repairs, you perform inspections required by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and carefully document your findings.

Within this field, you might choose to work with one specific aircraft, such as a helicopter. Or you could specialize in an area, such as hydraulics or engines. Whatever you choose, take pride in your work because your dedication ensures the safety of thousands of passengers.

Should I be an Aircraft Mechanic?

You should have a certificate degree or higher and share these traits:
  • High Achiever: You love the challenge of tackling difficult work.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.

  • Also known as: A and P Mechanic, Aircraft Accessories Mechanic, Aircraft Body and Bonded Structure Repairer See More

    How to become an Aircraft Mechanic

    Most Aircraft Mechanics have a Certificate. Chart?chd=s:n9baaa&chl=no+college+%2813%25%29|certificate+%2860%25%29|associate%27s+%2827%25%29|||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,13,60
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